The country saw a lot of big decisions and events leading up to the holiday weekend. Court rulings, social movements, and Presidential announcements filled the news cycle; and through support and dissent, most citizens felt a jolt of patriotism just before firework season. Perhaps that is why, for the first time in U.S. history, firework sales soared to well over $1 Billion.
Those sales, in turn, translated into 4.2 million deaths nationwide.
Almost all deaths attributed to fireworks were a result of misuse–or “user-error” as the fireworks lobby calls it–with the remainder being fireworks-related suicides.
“What a way to go,” said the neighbor of Jack Dulphur, a man who took his own life with fireworks on Saturday.
In 2014, nine people died from fireworks. Despite the 2015 numbers (so far) coming in a good bit higher, Lancaster pyrotechnician, Gene Ratsinger, believes this was a long time coming.
“People are dumb as *expletive*, so it doesn’t surprise me that there were quite a few more deaths this year.”
Precautions for next season are already being arranged. Local municipalities are considering a curfew after dusk. New York City Mayor, Bill de Blasio, is discussing a “firework frisk” during the week leading up to the 4th.
“If you’re caught with a firework, you get thrown in jail,” said de Blasio. “We’re putting together the details now, but it’s looking like a five year minimum sentence.”
“That’s more than half of 9-11,” said de Blasio. “For us it’s less about regulation, and more about the defense of terrorism. If a Dad managed to do this with a $20 firework–by accident–imagine what a planned attack could accomplish.”
Despite this season producing more deaths than the population of the entire state of Oregon, many firework displays ended safely.
“Absolutely, I support fireworks,” said de Blasio. “I mean, come on now, it’s July 4th. Who doesn’t love fireworks?”